When it’s time to make a transition and move across the country, you face a difficult task: sorting out what to bring with you. A big move like this means that you will need to make some tough choices, because moving anything will be expensive and you will have very limited space. In this post, we will explain some tips to help you figure out what to bring and what to leave behind or sell.

Keep Sentimental Things

Whether it’s pictures, books, jewelry, or anything else, you should hold onto anything that has some personal value to you beyond its monetary value. These objects are often associated with special memories or important people in your life, so do your best to keep them with you. These objects are often small, so they won’t take up too much space. It is a good idea to pack things like this separately to ensure that you can find them quickly when you need to unpack. As anyone who has moved knows, it is very common to postpone unpacking some of the things you bring with you, sometimes indefinitely. If you know where your most important things are, you can take care of them first.

Do Not Use Storage Services

It can be very tempting to open up a storage cube or unit to keep some of your things, but this is a mistake. All it will do is enable you to keep collecting things that you may well not need. A move is a good opportunity to free yourself of some of the stuff that you don’t need. If you get storage, the opposite will happen: you will just accumulate more things while you have a whole set of possessions stored away. You’ll wind up paying for storage for a long time because you will never have the space and time to unpack the storage unit. Nobody ever uses the things they put in storage as much as they expect. You should ask yourself why you don’t just get rid of an object every time you consider storing it away. Think about how it will most likely just sit in a storage unit for months before you even see it again. In that case is it really something you need?

Keep Durable Things

One of the best ways to cut down on the cost of moving is to hold onto things you have that are practical and will last a long time. For example, pots and pans, flatware, plates and bowls, and kitchen tools and appliances are very useful and they tend to last if they are of good quality. There’s no need to rebuy them if you already have a good set, so bring them with you. The same goes for electronics and clothing. Yes, your move is a fresh start, but just throwing out everything is a waste. Take a careful inventory of what you own and make special note of durable objects that you use a lot. Those should get a high priority when it comes time to make your list of what comes along.

Toss Things You Plan To Upgrade

Conversely, it makes sense that if there are things that you will rebuy, don’t take them with you. For example, TVs can be bulky as well as delicate. If you are getting a new job and a new place, you might well want a new TV. If that’s the case, you should save yourself some money and effort by getting the new TV right away when you move in and leaving the old one at the old place. Why carry a TV across the country if it is destined to be gone in a few months? You can make a similar argument for some other bulky pieces like speakers, air conditioners, and big appliances. Whether you own these depends on if you are renting or buying, because a renter’s landlord often supplies items like these. Think about what you would do if you were not moving. Are there items that you would want to upgrade in the near future even if you were staying where you are? Those are good candidates for being left behind.

Think Carefully About Furniture

Furniture is a delicate case. On the one hand, it tends to be bulky, heavy, and vulnerable to breaks and drops, so it takes a lot of effort and money to move. Those same qualities also make furniture expensive to replace, however, and some furniture can have sentimental value. This will come down to a case by case decision. Some people will want the continuity of their own furniture, while others prefer a totally fresh start. The cost and size of your furniture plays a big role as well. Some things make no sense to move because they are old, too big, or hard to protect from bumps. Most cases will fall into a gray area, though, where you will have to use your judgement to decide on whether to bring something along. If you will have more space after the move, then this decision is a little easier, but you will still need to make some tough choices. Furniture is often the hardest part because it is very expensive to rebuy, but by not bringing some of it, you can use that space and money to move many smaller things. You’ll simply have to decide on the emotional and practical value of each item individually- no set rule can guide you here.

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